Magnolia forward Ian Sangalang has been recognized as the PBA Player of the Week for the period of June 15 to 19 for his steady contributions that have helped the Hotshots stay afloat in the standings despite their slow start.
The 6-foot-7 Sangalang did it in style, holding his own against formidable counterparts like Northport’s Arwind Santos, Ginebra’s Christian Standhardinger, and Japeth Aguilar as well as San Miguel’s June Mar Fajardo behind a near double-double outing in the team’s last three outings.
Sangalang, fresh from a Mythical Second Team selection last season, averaged 16.0 points, 8.7 rebounds, 1.3 blocks, and 1.0 assist in a three-games-in-five-days stretch where Magnolia won two games to raise its record to 2-3 overall.
His heroics have never been more timely as Magnolia is currently missing the services of star wingman Paul Lee and veteran big man Rafi Reavis. Sangalang started the week with an 8-point, 10-rebound showing in the Hotshots’ close 80-77 win over Northport, but certainly made his mark in back-to-back games against San Miguel Beer and Ginebra.
Though Magnolia absorbed a tough 87-81 loss against the Beermen, Sangalang held the fort against Fajardo with 16 points, seven rebounds, and two blocks before going all out against the Gin Kings during the Manila Clasico Father’s Day Special.
With Calvin Abueva ejected early in the fourth, Sangalang took matters into his own hands by torching the crowd favorites for 24 points on a torrid 11-of-17 shooting, plus nine boards and two blocks in 40 minutes of action as Magnolia escaped with a thrilling 89-84 win.
Sangalang’s stellar play included six straight points midway through the payoff period where the Hotshots created separation that spelled the difference in the win.